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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Democratic candidate visits South Campus

Bill+White%2C+Democratic+candidate+for+Texas+governor%2C+gives+his+autograph+to+one+of+his+supporters.+White+visited+South+Campus+for+a+gubernatorial+forum+Sept.+22.++Photo+by+Casey+Holder%2FThe+Collegian
Bill White, Democratic candidate for Texas governor, gives his autograph to one of his supporters. White visited South Campus for a gubernatorial forum Sept. 22. Photo by Casey Holder/The Collegian

By Shelly Williams/editor in chief

Bill White, Democratic candidate for Texas governor, gives his autograph to one of his supporters. White visited South Campus for a gubernatorial forum Sept. 22.  Photo by Casey Holder/The Collegian
Bill White, Democratic candidate for Texas governor, gives his autograph to one of his supporters. White visited South Campus for a gubernatorial forum Sept. 22. Photo by Casey Holder/The Collegian

To emphasize the importance of voting, South adjunct government instructor Marshall Hobbs invited candidate for Texas governor Bill White to the campus.

In a gubernatorial forum Sept. 22, White answered questions from students, faculty and others.

Professional journalist and associate editor for the Star-Telegram Bob Ray Sanders moderated the event.

“It was nice to see that he was very forthright in coming out with some of his beliefs,” South student Jesse Brown said about White. “And that was very encouraging.”

During the forum, Sanders brought up the possibility of TCC and other colleges within the state having less state funding within the next year because of economic difficulties the state is facing.

“I’ll shoot straight about it,” White responded. “Let me give you an example. Is there anybody in this institution that has seen a textbook priced for over a $100? I don’t have a problem with bookstores making some margin and putting it into scholarship funds or something, but if you’re talking about publishers that are charging $100 to $150 as a company, then we need a governor who is going to go to bat for the students, the parents and the people of our state.”

Efforts to reach Gov. Rick Perry’s campaign staff were not successful.

Candidate for Texas governor Bill White answers questions at a South Campus forum.  Photo by Casey Holder/The Collegian
Candidate for Texas governor Bill White answers questions at a South Campus forum. Photo by Casey Holder/The Collegian

White then said if there was a way to gain a higher-quality education, it was to have teachers stop teaching multiple choice tests and start teaching reading and writing.

“It’s changing the testing system,” he said. “We ought to be teaching problem-solving and critical-thinking skills. We need to have people that are gifted and talented that are not limited where you have one school that’s all vocational, but where people have more choices and obstacles, where they can find a place for themselves.”

Students then asked White about keeping the environment clean and safe, especially because TCC campuses have several Barnett Shale natural gas wells.

“I believe we ought to leave this place better than when we got here,” White said. “I believe we need to plant as well as harvest, and the people have the right to breathe air that won’t make their lungs unhealthy, to drink water that won’t make them unhealthy.

“This is a contest between special interest and public interest. That’s why getting out the vote is so important.”

Following the forum, White met with more students and other audience members to answer questions more directly, instead of using a microphone.

“We talked about the marijuana law reform,” South student Janice Sanchez said. “I don’t think that I was very happy with his answer to be quite honest.”

Sanchez spoke with White in regards to the way agricultural hemp could be used to help produce jobs for Texans. She is still undecided on whether or not to vote for White.

“He said that it really was not a priority and that he felt that people who needed rehabilitation, that that was more of a priority,” she said. “So I told him if I could leave anything with him, it would be to research those laws and to make the change.”

White said his highest priorities were public safety and higher education.

“We need a governor who won’t balance the budget on the back of college tuition,” he said.

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